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Grave of David Lawrence


Waterloo Fairview Cemetery

In 1853, the Lawrence family settled in Prairie Rapids, near what is now Independence Avenue, with their son David, a young boy whose hair was so red that it resembled fire. It was David's red hair that drew curious Indians to the family, especially one squaw who would come into the family home and hold the boy upon her lap, all the while staring into the flames of the stove.

In April of 1853, David's father left the home to go to Independence, which was at the time another pioneer village, leaving his wife at home to watch the children. A short time later, the squaw then arrived at the cabin, taking David away with her on horseback, leaving the family to wonder if they would ever see the boy again.

At sunset the squaw returned, leading a white pony on which David rode, the young boy covered with flower wreaths. The boy explained to his parents that the Indians must have thought that his hair held magic powers for they had used him in a ceremony of spring planting. David also shared that the Indians had called him their "sun God Child."

David died in 1859 at the age of 12. He is buried in the original Hale's burial ground, on top of the hill in what is today's Fairview Cemetery. His is said to be the earliest marked grave found there.

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Last updated Wednesday, June 23, 2004

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